From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Type of site
Web search engine
Available in12 languages
Launched6 February 2012 (official launch)
14 June 2012 (public launch)
Current statusDefunct

Volunia was a web search engine (or social search engine)[1][2][3] created by Massimo Marchiori.[4][5] It was launched in beta only for registered power users on February 6, 2012[6] and went live on June 14, 2012. Volunia, dubbed as "the search engine of the future",[7] was speculated to be based on Hyper Search technology.[8][9] On June 8, 2012, Marchiori announced with an open letter[10] that he had been excluded from his project:[11] six days later, on June 14, 2012, the site went live, but it ceased to operate in February 2014.


The front page of Volunia, in March 2012.

The name Volunia stems from the words "volo" (flight) and "luna" (moon), because – as Marchiori said – he wanted to evoke the quantum leap his social search engine was trying to deliver.[1] The Volunia project was entirely developed in Italy: the head office was located in Padua, the servers were located in Sardinia and hosted by Tiscali,[1] and the whole team, formed by 14 people, was Italian.[citation needed]

The project[edit]

Volunia differed from normal search engines in that, while it crawled the web and indexed websites, it built the ranking using the comments and opinions of other users. The Volunia service allowed people to interact with each other in every page they visit,[12] as well as with the web sites' owners. Volunia used a system similar to Sidewiki. Volunia also introduced for the first time a "fly-over" map visualization for every web site, where every web site was turned into a city metaphor, also representing social information.[13][14] According to Marchiori, Volunia was not meant to be a competitor to the existing search engines, staying on an alternative level.[7] Despite what Marchiori had said, some people in the internet community considered Volunia a challenge and a potential competitor for Google.[1][15]


  1. ^ a b c d Caprara, Giovanni (7 February 2012). "Volunia, Italy's Answer to Google". Il Corriere della Sera. Retrieved 11 February 2012.
  2. ^ Jha, Smriti (2012-02-07). "Volunia, Italian Professor's Search Engine To Rival Google". CrazyEngineers. Retrieved 2012-02-11.
  3. ^ "Volunia, A Social Search Engine, Invites Public To Kick The Tires". Searchengineland.com. 2012-02-07. Retrieved 2012-02-11.
  4. ^ "Volunia, il primo motore di ricerca social pronto a sfidare Google". La Stampa. 6 February 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2012.
  5. ^ "TR100 Award Winner Launches new World-wide Search Engine". PR Newswire. Retrieved 2011-11-19.
  6. ^ "Google's Search Algorithm Challenged". PC World. Retrieved 2011-11-19.
  7. ^ a b "Volunia – wyszukiwanie trzeciej generacji – PGS Tech" [Volunia – third generation searching] (in Polish). Tech.pgs-soft.com. Retrieved 2012-02-12. wyszukiwarka trzeciej generacji ... jak mogłaby wyglądać wyszukiwarka przyszłości
  8. ^ "Volunia an alternate to Google Search". WMNToday. Retrieved 2011-12-26.
  9. ^ People search Engine. Data Crowd. 2014. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
  10. ^ "Dico addio a Volunia e vi spiego perché" (in Italian). Divisione Stampa Nazionale — Gruppo Editoriale L’Espresso.
  11. ^ "C'è baruffa su Volunia, l'anti-Google italiano; Il fondatore : "Mi hanno fatto fuori"" [Troubles on Volunia, the Italian anti-Google; the founder : "I have been kicked off"]. Corriere della Sera (in Italian). 2012-06-08. Retrieved 2012-06-09.
  12. ^ Bortolotti, Marco. "Volunia: il motore di ricerca italiano che può fare la differenza". Consulenze Web Marketing.
  13. ^ Sean Carlos (2012-02-07). "Volunia, A Social Search Engine, Says The Web Has Come Alive". Search Engine Land.
  14. ^ Miranda Miller (2012-03-14). "When Will Social Search Engine Volunia Deliver its Quantum Leap?". Search Engine Watch.
  15. ^ Roberto Bonzio. "Google "Inspirator" launches his challenge in Web Searching with volunia.com". Forbes (in Italian). Retrieved 2012-02-12.